To MVA, HANMI, SCC, Rotary, NMI Crime Stoppers, and the 17th Legislature: As we all know, these are trying times for the CNMI. The reports of crime in our community are increasing daily. Recently, I was moved by a simple story that ran on the news and would like to share that story with you.
Kanis Sinounou was driving with his girlfriend when he noticed a man mugging a lady tourist on the sidewalk at 7pm in the Garapan area. The man punched the tourist, knocked her down and tried to grab her purse. Kanis witnessed this and could not just keep driving. He stopped the car, got out, ran over and bear-hugged the criminal. He held the man until a police finally passed by. A while later, Officer Peter Aldan happened to be patrolling the area, witnessed the scuffle, and stopped. As the cop was trying to put cuffs on the criminal he attempted to flee again. Kanis held him down again until he was cuffed.
The local news covered the story here: http://youtu.be/bvp8X5_97-w
I know some may argue that vigilantism should not be promoted but I would like to differ a bit. I believe when members of this small community witness crimes being committed it is our duty to do something about it. Sadly, many times we as citizens (me included) may see things that are wrong but we turn a blind eye to them because we feel it is none of our business, out of fear, or simply due to what we feel are other more pressing matters.
The man in this video clip could have just driven off and who knows what would have happened to victim in this case. Perhaps he could have just phoned the cops and let them know he saw something odd and we could hope that they would have arrived in time. He didn’t, he saw something wrong and he acted to correct that wrong.
I must also give thanks to Officer Peter Aldan for actively patrolling the area and reacting so quickly.
I am unsure of whether any of the groups I have addressed in this letter have any set procedures for recognizing upstanding citizens. That is the reason I am sending you this note. If your organization does, I would like to nominate Mr. Kanis Sinounou for commendation.